Cover Image: Daisy Woodworm Changes the World

Daisy Woodworm Changes the World

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Member Reviews

Thank you NetGalley and the publisher for an opportunity to read this book.

Daisy Woodworm Changes the World is a middle grade book with a heart of gold. It had everything I enjoy about realistic fiction middle grade, including memorable characters, an interesting and relatable plot, challenges that the main character overcomes, and meaningful themes such as family, friendship, courage, standing up for what you believe in, hard work, and growth.

Daisy was a terrific main character. She's in 8th grade but reads much older, as she's had to take on so many additional responsibilities at home. Her parents are starting their new business, and aren't around very much. Daisy's older brother Sorell (nicknamed Squirrel) has Down's Syndrome, and his dream is to be a YouTube celebrity. When Daisy's social studies teacher assigns the class a "Change the World" project, Daisy decides that she'll make Squirrel's YouTube dreams come true.

Her friends also embrace the social studies project, and that's where the book really comes to life, as they work together and help each other out. The teamwork is wonderfully portrayed here.

Another interesting thing about Daisy is that she loves insects, and wants to be an entomologist when she grows up. She knows a lot about insects and has her own terrarium. Some of the metaphors between insects and what's she's experiencing are really fascinating to read about. I love the parallels and how Daisy is able to piece these commonalities together.

There's a little bit of very clean romance (think first crush) and bullying. There's a kid that picks on Daisy and teases her for having a lisp, and also because her family is not privileged. 

All in all, a great read!
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Daisy Woodworm Changes the World by Melissa Hart is a fantastic book about Daisy and her older brother affectionately nicknamed Squirrel by her when she was little.   Daisy worries about public speaking because she has a lisp and there is a student in her class that bullies her for it.  Squirrel, has Down Syndrome and loves both the Special Olympics and men's fashion and has a dream to become a YouTube star.  But in the past, there was a bullying incident related to a social media post involving Squirrel which lead to their parents to be absolutely against any social media for Squirrel even though he is 17.  

When one of Daisy's teachers gives her an assignment to change the world for the better which includes an oral report at the end, Daisy along with the help of her friends tries to help Squirrel become a fashion YouTube star and overcome her fear of public speaking.   In addition to liking the story, I especially liked the representation of a girl with a lisp and several characters with differing abilities and a girl with two moms that was shown in the story.  

Thank you to NetGalley for the eARC of this book.
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This review is based on an ARC. 

 Daisy wants to help her brother, who has Downs syndrome, achieve his YouTube fashionista dreams, and, when the Special Olympics is cancelled, partners with a classmate to try to save the games, and make Squirrel’s dreams come true.  Daisy is a relatable protagonist, embarrassed by her parents, her family’s lack of income, and her lisp, and relating better to her roomful of insects and other arthropods and her goals of being an entomologist than to her classmates, in part because of past experiences with being bullied. Squirrel is shown as a character with a happy, full life, including school, a job he’s proud of, a girlfriend, special Olympics, and his friend. The characters are well written.

In the main, I liked this book. I would like it better if Squirrel were a legal adult (vs 17 1/2), where he could make decisions on his own that conflict with his parent’s choices, and Daisy was supporting him vs it being more that Daisy appears to be the one driving the situation and Squirrel going along for the ride-and also leads to questioning the adults involved, who accepted a forged, photographed consent form without any questions. . I also feel that it would have been better had the need for collaboration and mutual support be stressed, the projects at least being given the option to be group projects, and the teacher shown suggesting outside resources. It would have been logical for Daisy to connect with Miguel anyway since they both had an interest in the Special Olympics, and Daisy would have wanted someone else to do the talking, and after that point, it could have progressed as written.  Realistically, the larger scale projects WOULD fail without outside support and assistance, 

With a few changes, this could be an excellent book which absolutely serves a need. As it stands, it is merely a good one. I hope that the author/publisher will consider making revisions before the publication date, and I would love to read the story with those revisions.
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Daisy Woodworm Changes the World is a wonderful middle grade story about friends and family that feels very believable. The book focuses on Daisy's desire to help her brother Squirrel, who has Down syndrome, by allowing him to pursue his passions despite their parents' concerns that doing so will open him up to online bullying. Hart builds Daisy's world so that it's full of a varied cast of friends and enriching details about her life on the track team, and gives readers a strong sense of community and place. The plot moves at a great pace for middle grade readers, who I am sure will root for Daisy in her quest to change her brother's world, overcome her own anxieties, and persevere while coming to understand that everyone has challenges to overcome.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an advance copy.
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Thank you, Netgalley and Jolly Fish Press for providing an e-arc in exchange for an honest review.

Daisy is a normal girl living her life with her family and her brother with down syndrome. Though, financially they were struggling and still were able to survive their life because of the business of their parents which is the Poop Fairy.

Daisy has the condition of a lisp which became the reason for bullying. Because of this condition also, she was shy speaking in front of other people. But as their teacher announced that their project will be the way to change the world, this results in her panic thinking, since they need to report the results in front of the class. This project will challenge her confidence, her beliefs, and her determination to overcome her fears and be able to help her brother.

Again, I want to thank Netgalley for accepting my request to read this book in advance. I was fascinated by the story of this book. I can’t help to be amazed because the story or the concept was based on Ms. Melissa Hart, plus she has also a brother with down syndrome.

The story tells us that even if we have these differences, this will not be a hindrance to being happy and doing what we want, with disability or not.

Overall, I will recommend this book to those readers who want to read a good middle-grade book. 😊
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I really enjoyed this book! I saw people in my life with Down syndrome reflected in Squirrel and his friends and I can’t think of another middle grade book that provides this type of positive representation off the top of my head. I also loved that the book itself was focused on having kids do projects to change the world, definitely a topic that will help create discussion and hopefully inspire young readers to change the world as well. 

4.5 stars. I will absolutely be recommending it.
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A really solid middle-grades story about friendship, family, and making your mark in the world. Daisy and friends are real and relatable. The storyline is a tad predictable, but it was enjoyable. Will be recommending this one!
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It was okay? But i wished there were more... the characters were okay...but nothing big, nothing interesting. Not for me at least.
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I loved so many things about this book. I initially wanted to read it because I saw that Daisy loves insects, which I do too, and she didn't disappoint me. I loved all the little insect facts sprinkled in throughout the story. Other things I loved: Daisy in general, including her growth as a person, trying to find her voice, overcoming things that scare her... I also loved the relationship between Daisy and her brother Squirrel. They were such lovely siblings who supported and loved each other and it was beautiful. I ALSO loved the social studies teacher, he was great, and he actually did something about the bullying in his class, and did his best to support all his students. 
The only thing I didn't like was Daisy's parents. At times they seemed great and supportive, but at other times.... listen, I understand that the family was challenged economically, and the parents were super busy with their new business... that's not my issue. My issue is how they refused to listen to their children. The kids already do most of the housework like cleaning and cooking, and they refuse to listen when they talk about their own wishes? They don't even want to hear them out? PLUS when they found out what Daisy was doing (which was making her brother very happy), they got so mad that they ignored her, froze her out, and decided not to support her with her track stuff? That sh** made me angry. They emotionally manipulated and guilted her, and their apology? Weak. 
All in all I thought the ending was really good and fitting and all, I just wish there had been a deeper more sincere apology from them. It didn't feel good to me. But all of this is just me and my feelings, I still really loved the book and its main characters Daisy and Squirrel.
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This book opens my eyes for more story about family with disabilities kids. I am going blind when read this book, and enjoy the surprise to know about Daisy and Squirrel sibling dynamics. The parenting style isnt my cup of tea but in the end everything going well for everyone so I am content.

Thanks Netgalley for providing me this beautiful story.
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What an inspirational story this was of Daisy wanting to help her brother Sorrel (Squirrel) who has Down syndrome achieve his dream of becoming a YouTube celebrity. Squirrel is also looking forward to the Special Summer Olympic Games until he finds out they’re canceled. Then Daisy’s parents tell her she can’t put Squirrel on any social media. When her class is assigned a Change the World project, a friend gets the idea to raise money for the Olympics. Pictures are taken and Squirrel is on social media. Daisy’s parents find out and pictures are taken down. Daisy feels she has failed her family and friends. Did she think a “bunch of kids working together could actually change the world?” Can she do anything to convince her parents that what she and her friends are doing can make the world a better place?
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